Bonkers “will do anything” to escape OCE Valorant via Ascension



Bonkers “will do anything” to escape OCE Valorant via Ascension

Published: 2023-06-28T17:37:42  ❘   Updated: 2023-06-28T17:37:55Riot Games

Bonkers has had a tough road to VCT Pacific Ascension as the Oceanic squad has had to compete and fund its boot camp without backing from an esports organization. The team outlined its journey in an interview with Dexerto.

Oceania as a region has been all but abandoned in Valorant esports. Players and esports organizations have exited the region for better prospects elsewhere, and the Challengers League Oceania only had two teams signed to an organization.

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But that hasn’t stopped Oceanic players from trying their hand at making it to VCT Pacific. Bonkers, the Challengers League Oceania representative at VCT Pacific Ascension, is an unsigned squad that is fighting for recognition in the promotion tournament.

“We’re always confident,” Bonkers captain Jackson ‘Minimise’ White told Dexerto about their tournament chances. “Ascension has a lot of good teams, but we want nothing more than to prove Oceania is capable of generating tier-one talent and we will show the world to stop sleeping on us.”

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Getting ready for Ascension was rough for Bonkers as the team had to crowdfund money to pay for a bootcamp ahead of the LAN tournament in Bangkok, Thailand. The squad managed to reach its funding goal thanks to a $1,500 donation and a shoutout from Valorant streamer Tarik ‘tarik’ Celik.

“Having someone you watch so much help you out is really surreal and it feels good to have tarik and his fans supporting us,” Minimise said.


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Bonkers on making Ascension and the lack of org support

The team had no serious offers from esports organizations throughout their Challengers League campaign. Of the ten teams attending the event in Bangkok, Bonkers is the only one that doesn’t have the support of an organization.

“At some point, it would be motivational but at this point it’s just really tiring, organising the bootcamp and travel while trying to play is really hard, along with no financial stability,” the Bonkers captain said about being the only unsigned squad at the tournament.

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“However, representing yourself is really fun. We have a lot of freedom on how to do socials and how we brand ourselves and the support we get is amazing.”

Because of the lack of organizational support, most of Bonkers’ players have to juggle school and Valorant practice.

Despite the hectic schedule, the team was able to crush its Oceanic competition in the Challengers League. Bonkers only dropped two series across the group and playoff stage in the second split, beating NerdPunt, one of the signed teams in the league, 3-0 in the grand final.

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Minimise said he doesn’t have much hope of signing with an organization even after Ascension, so the squad’s eggs are all in one basket: securing promotion.

“Making VCT Pacific would make it all worth it,” he said. “For many, Oceanic Valorant is an endless time sink that’s foolish to pursue. However, some of us are insane enough to think we have a chance of making it and will do anything to get there.”

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Bonkers starts its campaign toward promotion on June 28 as it hopes to make it out of a group that also includes SCARZ, Dplus, BLEED and Orangutan.

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